2022 CCEW Illustrated Poem Contest: Results

Winner of K-2 Category
Winner of Grade K-2 category (Local Contest):
Ranvitha Vivek, 1st grader from Heathrow Elementary School (Lake Mary)
Winner of K-2 Category
Winner of grade 3-5 Category
Winner of Grade 3-5 category (Local Contest):
Lakshitha Bhandari, a 4th grader, from Goldsboro Elementary Magnet School (Sanford)
Winner of grade 3-5 Category
Runner-up of grade 3-5 Category
Runner-up of Grade 3-5 category (Local Contest):
Aadhav Kumar, a 3rd grader, from Wilson Elementary School (Sanford)
Runner-up of grade 3-5 Category
Runner-up of grade 3-5 Category
Runner-up of Grade 3-5 category (Local Contest):
Mackenzie Gordon, a 4th grader, from English Estates Elementary (Fern Park)
Runner-up of grade 3-5 Category
Winner of grade 9-12 Category
Winner of Grade 9-12 category (Local Contest):
Eric Segrest, a 10th grader, from Lake Highland Prep School (Orlando)
Winner of grade 9-12 Category
1st Place of grade K-2 Category
1st Place of Grade K-2 category (National Contest):
Second Grader, Stonemill Elementary School, Chemical Society of Washington
1st Place of grade K-2 Category
2nd Place of grade K-2 Category
Second Place of Grade K-2 category (National Contest):
Second Grader, Capital Montessori School, Puget Sound Local Section
2nd Place of grade K-2 Category
1st Place of grade 3-5 Category
1st Place of Grade 3-5 category (National Contest):
Fifth Grader, Jumoke Academy at the Hartford Conservatory, Connecticut Valley Local Section
1st Place of grade 3-5 Category
2nd Place of grade 3-5 Category
2nd Place of Grade 3-5 category (National Contest):
Fifth Grader, Howard Drive Elementary, South Florida Local Section
2nd Place of grade 3-5 Category
1st Place of grade 6-8 Category
1st Place of Grade 6-8 category (National Contest):
Sixth Grader, Jefferson Middle School, Midland Local Section
1st Place of grade 6-8 Category
2nd Place of grade 6-8 Category
2nd Place of Grade 6-8 category (National Contest):
Seventh Grader, The Harker School, Silicon Valley Local Section
2nd Place of grade 6-8 Category
1st Place of grade 9-12 Category
1st Place of Grade 9-12 category (National Contest):
Eleventh Grader, Calloway County High School, Kentucky Lake Local Section
1st Place of grade 9-12 Category
2nd Place of grade 9-12 Category
2nd Place of Grade 9-12 category (National Contest):
Eleventh Grader, PA Leadership Charter School, Pittsburgh Local Section
2nd Place of grade 9-12 Category
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To promote the positive role that chemistry plays in the world, the American Chemical Society (ACS) established the Chemists Celebrate Earth Week (CCEW) public awareness campaign. Among many other activities, the Orlando Section of the ACS hosted 2022 CCEW Illustrated Poem Contest for K-12 students in Central Florida. The theme of the contest is “The Buzz About Bugs: Insect Chemistry.”

The contest received many entries from multiple schools. Thanks to the teachers who brought the contest to students’ attention.

Results of local contest:

Grade K-2 Category
Winner: Ranvitha Vivek from Heathrow Elementary School, guided by Amber Mash

Grade 3-5 Category*
Winner: Lakshitha Bhandari from Goldsboro Elementary Magnet School, guided by Mary Lynn Hess
Runner-up: Aadhav  Kumar from Wilson Elementary School, guided by Nicole Chavez
Runner-up: Mackenzie Gordon from English Estates Elementary, guided by Kelly Atterbury

Grade 6-8 Category
No winner

Grade 9-12 Category
Winner: Eric Segrest from Lake Highland Preparatory School, guided by Steve Math

The winner of each category will receive a certificate and a monetary award of $50. The runners-up of Grade 3-5 category will receive a certificate and a monetary award of $25. The teacher who guided the winner of each category and the runners-up of Grade 3-5 category will receive a school supply funding of $100 and $50, respectively.

The winner of each category also advances to the national 2022 CCEW Illustrated Poem Contest. The full results of national contest can be found at ACS Website.

If you have any comments or questions regarding the local contest, please contact the local section’s CCEW coordinator (Dr. Duy Le, duy.le@ucf.edu).

* Because Grade 3-5 category received a large number of high-quality entries, the executive committee of the local section voted to give two tied runner-up awards for this category.

Summer Social Event

We hope you have had a healthy and productive year so far and are ready for the official start of summer. In this bulletin we would like to bring to your attention an exciting summer social events that our section is organizing. To honor our 50th, 60th and 70th year ACS members and celebrate the 95th anniversary of The ACS Women Chemists Committee, the ACS Orlando Local Section is organizing a Summer Social Event

on Saturday, June 25th, 2022 
(stating at 11:30 AM)
at the Cooper’s Hawk Winery & Restaurant
529 N Alafaya Trail, Orlando, FL 32828

Apart from socializing, the award ceremony to recognize our senior members, we are very pleased to announce that Dr. Christina Drake of Kismet Technologies will give a short talk about the bacterial and viral transmissions in hospitals, a topic that is so important in the current COVID era.  

Also, this time the ACS Orlando section will subsidize part of the meal cost, so our members will have to pay only $25 out-of-pocket for a three-course meal. The location can accommodate only 42 people, so early registration is highly encouraged. Please follow the link below to register for the event. The registration deadline is June 15th.

Registration link: https://forms.gle/MJ2Z5ysTydFhwWqr8

Please don’t forget to subscribe to our community page, follow our facebook pageand check out our website for updated news, and activities of our local section.

We look forward to seeing you all there!

Best wishes,|
Dr. Denisia Popolan-Vaida
Chair of ACS Orlando Section
On behalf of the ACS Orlando Local Section executive committee

Younger Chemist Committee (YCC): Let’s ignite the hunger while we are younger!

The Younger Chemist Committee (YCC) of the Orlando Section of the American Chemical Society is established with a mission to advocate for, develop, and support rising chemists to positively impact their careers, the ACS, and the future of chemistry. We aim to build a community that will welcome budding chemists to seek guidance, voice concerns, and hone various technical and social skills. We hold with high regard the idea of networking and job-seeking and will organize events to reach those goals. The local section YCC works close-knit with the local section ACS making them unique from other clubs with similar goals. 

Starting in 2022, the Committee is led by Mohammed Muzammil Nishar Ahmed (Mill), a graduate student from Florida Institute of Technology. The committee is currently looking for interested individuals to help structure the board so that the club can get the ball rolling for its endeavors. The board positions include a chair, secretary, treasurer, engagement team, interface team, and communications team. If you or someone you know would like to contribute to the activities of the YCC, please connect with us via facebook or email us at ycc@orlandoacs.org.

The State Science & Engineering Fair of Florida 2022: Avogadro award winner

Cayley McCloskey, 2022 Avogadro award winner

Congratulations to Cayley McCloskey from the Lely High School (Naples, Florida) for winning the 2022 Avogadro award at the 67th State Science & Engineering Fair of Florida (67th SSEF)! Cayley’s project is entitled ‘Comparing the enthalpy changes of anhydrous salts using calorimetry.’ The young scientist performed experiments to determine which exothermic salt when dissolved in water would produce the greatest increase in temperature of the water and in turn the greatest calculated enthalpy change measured through calorimetry.  Cayley found that magnesium sulfate is the salt that releases the most heat per mole, followed by calcium chloride and sodium acetate and suggests that magnesium sulfate would be the ideal salt for consumer products such as heat packs, handwarmer, and for use on icy roads.

The Avogadro Award that is given each year at the State Science and Engineering Fair with the support of the ACS local sections in the state of Florida.

CCEW 2022: Orlando Section at Central Florida Earthday

The Orlando Local Section took part in the Central Florida Earthday on April 23th, 2022 at Lake Eola (Downtown Orlando) to celebrate the Earth Week. This effort was led by Dr. Titel Jurca (Assistant Professor at UCF) and volunteers. The overall theme for our display was about “The Buzz About Bugs: Insect Chemistry”. Three posters were designed and used to support our outreach activity. The posters were used to facilitate discussion largely with teenage to adult age range visitors. The topics ranged from general facts/curiosities, specific applications to forensics, and a cross-over with materials chemistry and nanoscience and physics with regards to butterfly wings.

To engage younger children, we curated two activities. One was an arts and crafts station to create “chromatography” butterflies using coffee filters, water, and markers. This activity was very engaging with active participation throughout the day. Our second activity was a microscope set-up, as pictured below, and a collection of pinned insects donated from the University of Central Florida. This activity was perhaps our most popular with children of all ages and even adults often spending 10+ minutes looking at all of the structural features of the insects, learning about chitin, discussing color effects in butterfly wings, etc… Overall, the chromatography butterfly craft and the microscopy portion directly engaged and held a captive audience of over 150+ people throughout the day. Remaining passing engagement, discussion of posters/topics, presence of ACS in the community, and dissemination of pamphlets reached an estimated additional 400+ participants throughout the day.

The event began at 10 AM and ended at 4PM.

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Fast or Slow, Chemistry Makes It go – 2021 National Chemistry Week

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“FAST or SLOW, Chemistry Makes It Go” event was held at the Orlando Science Center on October 23rd. This effort was led by Dr. Denisia Popolan-Vaida (UCF) and volunteers. Volunteers performed demo/hands-on experiments, which were chosen to fit the National Chemistry Week theme. They also discussed the importance of chemistry in our daily life. There are total of 13 demo/hands-on experiments that were performed by the UCF and FIT faculty and students (5 faculty and 17 students). According to the Orlando Science Center, over 300 kids and adults visited our event. Participant demographics included K-12 students, college students, K-12 teachers, parents, and grandparents.

This event demonstrates our ability to establish collaboration with other organizations. We have managed to get ACS Student Chapter at UCF, Orlando Science Center, University of Central Florida (faculty and students), Florida Institute of Technology (faculty and students) involved in the Section.

30 Year Anniversary of the Section

This year marks the 30th anniversary of the Orlando Section of the American Chemical Society. The celebration of this milestone will happen at our annual award banquet on December 4th, 2021 at the 310 Lakeside restaurant (301 E Pine St, Orlando, FL 32801).*

We will have moments to look back at the history of our section and to highlight “what-they-are-doing-now” of the award winners at the early days. Each participant will also receive a special and long-lasting souvenir (while supply lasts).

Reservation can be made online at https://forms.gle/okhyqWaqGSGLtTtw8, or by sending email to contact@orlandoacs.org or calling Darlene Slattery at 321-632-2535. Reservations must be made by November 22, 2021 (New deadline).   Please include names so that we can provide nametags.

The cost will be $25/person (after subsidy, tax and gratuity included). The Section will pay the bill with a single check. Please be prepared to pay at the door by check or cash—unfortunately we cannot accept credit cards.

Please join us to celebrate the history of our local section and recognize excellence in chemistry!

* All guests are expected to follow safety guidelines of the restaurant on the day of the event. For more information, please visit https://310restaurant.com.

Annual Election: Meet the Candidates for 2022 Executive Committee

Dr. Christopher Chouinard
Candidate for Chair-Elect

Dr. Christopher Chouinard is currently an Assistant Professor in the Chemistry Department at Florida Institute of Technology. His research involves novel ion mobility-mass spectrometry (IM-MS) methods for the detection of illicit substances including performance-enhancing drugs. He received his BS degrees in Chemistry and Biology from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, his Ph.D. in Chemistry from University of Florida, and did post-doctorial studies in IM-MS instrument development at Pacific Northwest National Lab.

Dr. Chouinard has served on the ACS Orlando Section executive committee (Chair-Elect/Chair/Past Chair) continuously since 2019. Most recently, he spearheaded the Section’s successful bid to host the 2025 Southeastern Regional Meeting of the ACS (SERMACS), for which he will be serving as General Chair. This will be the first time the meeting is held in Florida since 1987.

Dr. Van Quach
Candidate for Treasurer

Dr. Van Quach has been the treasurer of the Orlando Section since 2019.  In addition, he is a professor of chemistry at Seminole State College.  He has been teaching there since Aug 2010.  He received his Bachelor of Science degree in chemistry from the University of Florida in 1999.  After taking some time off for travel, he made his way up to Tallahassee, FL to start graduate school.  At Florida State University, his research focused on better understanding of the theoretical and fundamental processes that occur during chemical separation.  Specifically, he investigated the temperature dependence of the phase ration in liquid chromatography systems.  He received his Ph.D. in 2009 and taught for two years at FSU before returning to the central Florida area to teach at Seminole State College.  In his spare time, he enjoys cooking, reading, and drinking good wines.

Dr. Pavithra Pathirathna
Candidate for Secretary

Dr. Pavithra Pathirathna is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Biomedical and Chemical Engineering and Sciences at the Florida Institute of Technology.  She performed her undergraduate studies at the University of Kelaniya, Sri Lanka, and her Ph.D. with Parastoo Hashemi in the Department of Chemistry at Wayne State University, MI, USA. Her postdoctoral work was at the University of Pittsburgh with Shigeru Amemiya. Pavithra’s interdisciplinary and translational research program centers on developing and optimizing electrochemical sensors for analyzing biologically and environmentally impactful metals and neurotransmitters with applications in point of care diagnostics.

Dr. Laura Sessions
Candidate for Alternate Councilor

Dr. Sessions was born and raised in Winter Park, FL. She received undergraduate and graduate degrees from University of Florida and Dartmouth College, respectively. She has taught at Valencia College for the past eleven years, also serving as Department Chair, on the Faculty Association Council, and in multiple endowed chair awards. Dr. Sessions has enjoyed volunteering with the ACS Orlando section since 2015 in several positions including Alternate Councilor, Awards Chair, and Chair and would look forward to continuing her service this year as Alternate Councilor

Annual Awards Banquet Invitation

The Orlando Section of the American Chemical Society will recognize 2021 awards winners in a traditional annual awards banquet on December 4th, 2021. You are invited to attend the banquet:

Saturday, December 4th, 2021
11:30AM to 2:00PM
At the 310 Lakeside restaurant
301 E Pine St, Orlando, FL 32801

MENU
Appetizers
Caramelized Onion & Goat Cheese Bruschetta
Fried Green Tomato – pimento spread, bacon jam, chives
Signature Salad
Mixed Greens grape tomatoes, cucumbers, shaved onion, house made balsamic vinaigrette
Entrée choice of
Pasta Primavera seasonal vegetables, grana padano cheese
Chicken Piccata white wine, butter, capers, lemon sauce garlic mash, seasonal vegetable
Salmon tomato bruschetta, balsamic glaze garlic mash, seasonal vegetable
Dessert
Oreo Cream Trifle
Beverages
Iced tea, soft beverages, and Illy coffee
Cash bar is available

The cost will be $25/person (after subsidy, tax and gratuity included)The Section will pay the bill with a single check. Please be prepared to pay at the door by check or cash—unfortunately we cannot accept credit cards.

Reservation can be made online at https://forms.gle/okhyqWaqGSGLtTtw8, or by sending email to contact@orlandoacs.org or calling Darlene Slattery at 321-632-2535. Reservations must be made by November 20, 2021.   Please include names so that we can provide nametags.

We look forward to seeing you all there!

Annual Election: Call for 2022 Executive Board Candidates & Voting

We are seeking interested individuals to join the Orlando Section Executive Committee in 2022! We have four positions up for election: Chair Elect, Secretary, Treasurer, and Alternate Councilor. A description of each position is included below. Please contact Dr. Denisia Popolan-Vaida (Denisia.Popolan-Vaida@ucf.edu), Nominating Committee Chair, with any additional questions.

All nominations (including name of nominee, contact information, and nominated position) must be notified to Dr. Denisia Popolan-Vaida (via email at Denisia.Popolan-Vaida@ucf.edu) by October 15th, 2021. Voting is expected to open on October 25th, when you will receive a separate email with the instructions on how to cast your votes electronically. Please let us know before October 15th if you would like to be mailed a paper copy ballot.

OFFICER ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITIES

Chair Elect (one-year term; three-year term total). The main responsibilities are:
• To vote/participate in exec decisions
• Succeed to office of Chair for the next year
• Serve as chair for meetings which the Chair cannot attend

Treasurer (one-year term). The main responsibilities are:
• Prepare the annual budget/expenditures report for Nationals
• Maintain the Section bank account
• Maintain a budget, disbursements, expenditures, and accounting for the Section activities
• To vote/participate in exec decisions

Secretary (one-year term). The main responsibilities are:
• To take notes at exec meetings
• To set-up and distribute ballots for elections (mostly electronic now)
• Oversee website and social media communications
• To vote/participate in exec decisions

Alternate Councilor (three-year term). The main responsibilities are:
• To attend national meeting annually (if Councilor is not able), represent the Section, and report back activities
• Assist in preparing and submitting the annual report to the national office
• To vote/participate in exec decisions